Sunday, 6 August 2017

Sometimes Kids Games Are The Best Games

Here's What I've Been Playing This Week:

Rhino Hero - For a simple dexterity kids game, Rhino Hero is actually pretty fun!  It's a bit like a more friendly, better looking version of Jenga, that has you pitting against your opponents as you build a tower for the Rhino Hero.  The goal is to be the first to play all your roof cards, but to play a roof card you must first build the walls in the tower by following the plan laid out on the previous players turn.  Skip a turn, pick up a card, change direction and other cards will feel familiar to Uno players, but with a destructive structure, Rhino Hero towers above other similar games to feel fresh and exciting.  Worth picking up if your after a simple and kid friendly filler.

Fuse - Am sure I've mentioned this before, but I'll say it again just in case.  I love real time games! I find them some of the most intense games and its nice going into a game knowing exactly how long it will last.  Escape: Curse of The Temple is still my favourite real time game, but Fuse with a few more plays may be just the game to capture top spot.  If the 10 minute timer isn't pressure enough, the theme of diffusing bombs definitely helps!  We only did the training mission and only once. It was a win - but only just.  As fun as it was, from the start we were only ever going to play once as a quick fill in before moving on.  I'm definitely intrigued to try some more and see how challenging Fuse can become.  We didn't bother scoring as everyone was just happy that we won, but am sure will do things more properly when we actually sit down to actually give Fuse its proper dues.  Watch this space..

Biblios - It was a filler kind of night.  Biblios is one I hadn't played in a good year but randomly decided it was time to give it another go.  I've always liked it, but never loved it and the first 2 groups of players I tried it with didn't rate it too highly.  A third group a year later can often change things, but once again I felt the same.  Biblios seems to be highly rated for a filler but I personally just think its ok.  There's plenty of filler games and while Biblios plays smoothly and easily, its just not that exciting.  Even the dice moving from 3 to a 4 or dropping one from a 3 to a 2, doesn't seem that dramatic or game changing.  Everything about Biblios works fine, but for me it falls a bit flat when there's quite a few other fillers raring to go in the library.  This one is headed back to the shelf to collect a bit more dust but hopefully next time I try it my thoughts change.

Roll For The Galaxy: Ambition - First time trying with the expansion, but it was only really a half hearted attempt as we just played with the new black and orange dice and the new game starting tiles.  I debated using the whole expansion, but as it was a last minute decision to play Roll, I hadn't read the rules since I first got the game and wanted to just get straight into the game before others lost interest.  Having just the new starting worlds and factions made a difference and combining them with the black and orange dice did manage to breath some new life into one of my favourite dice games.  I think the new dice made the game easier - it just felt like I could do what I wanted to do more often as the dice allowed more freedom, which attributed to my highest score ever.  Potentially I built my engine well and played to my strengths better than usual, but I think having the leader dice made that possible.  So if the expansion gives you the creative freedom to focus on what you want from the start, but being more flexible and being easier to recruit workers - isn't that a good thing?  Not sure the others necessarily agreed, but in my opinion that part of Ambition is here to stay.

Scythe - My second game of Scythe.  The first game, while a hit that definitely taught us the basics - was filled with gameplay errors.  Funny how the actual rules often make the game better to play.  This time I borrowed the rule book and read up the night before on everything we did wrong the first game.  It wasn't much, but the little things we did wrong were enough to really alter Scythe in a bad way. After a quick five minute discussion on what the real rules were, we were off without barely a hitch.  I think the rule book was consulted once, possibly twice the whole game and everyone seemed to be a lot more efficient at building their engines and following along with a strategy.  Lucky for me, my strategy paid off with a convincing victory, but it was only because everything just seemed to fall into place.  Yes I had some idea of what I wanted to do, but even the other players seemed to be falling into place with what I wanted so the results were nice.  Not sure when we'll play again, but if its suggested I'm definitely there!

Board Games Purchased This Week:

T.I.M.E. Stories: Lumen Fidei - Our group still has a lot of catching up to do with the T.I.M.E Stories scenarios. We've completed Asylum and Marcy's Case and have mentioned starting A Prophecy Of Dragons a few times, but then obviously have Under The Mask and Endurance still to play through as well.  We meet once a week for a board game session (which sometimes turns into a Movie night too), and take it in turns picking the weeks entertainment and I know eventually someone will pick T.I.M.E. Stories and even if we have more breaks in between the scenarios - one day we'll get around to playing Lumen Fidei and most likely every other forth coming expansion.  So I'll get them all as they are released unless some how we decide we are sick of them.  But for $30-$35 and 2-3 nights of immersion in a narrative story, I'm definitely not complaining.

Celestia - Another quick simple filler that will be placed above the aforementioned Biblios.  At least that's how I think it will play out.  I enjoy Incan Gold, and Celestia from the surface appears to be a slightly deeper game with the same laugh out loud push your luck mechanic as Incan.  Is there room for both in the library?  Most likely not as proven by the fact Port Royal has barely been looked at since Incan Gold came around.  But if one game is going to replace Incan as my go to push your luck, I have a strong feeling it's going to be Celestia and it's a pretty good looking game to boot too!